Accreditation is an incredibly important facet of your CHES or MCHES certification.
Did you know? Accreditation is a voluntary evaluation process that certain certifying organizations – like NCHEC - undergo in order to maintain standards of professional quality agreed upon by members of a National and/or International accrediting body. Accreditation provides a formal, independent assessment of competence, and publicly recognizes the quality of an organization’s personnel certification services.
Why CHES or MCHES?
We get it. Eligibility requirements are difficult, the exam is lengthy, and sign up takes time and energy, and likely involves some hurdles along the way. So why not a different, ‘easier’ certification? After all, as long as you have learned the material, you should be able to walk away with a paper that means something, right?
Not necessarily. While some unaccredited certification or certificate programs might offer valuable learning experiences, not all certifications are created equal. NCHEC provides the only nationally and internationally accredited certifications for health education specialists. Our accreditation provides professionally measured standards that ensure the ongoing validity of the CHES and MCHES certifications in the field of health education/promotion.
Who accredits the CHES/MCHES certifications?
The National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) has accredited the CHES certification program since 2008 and the MCHES certification program since 2013. The NCCA was developed, in order to “ensure the health, welfare, and safety of the public through the accreditation of a variety of certification programs/organizations that assess professional competence”. The NCCA standards require demonstration of a valid and reliable process for development, implementation, maintenance and governance of certification programs.
Recently, NCHEC earned accreditation as a Personnel Certification Body by the International Accreditation Service (IAS) for the ISO/IEC 17024 Conformity Assessment - General Requirements for Bodies Operating Certification of Persons. Accreditation by IAS provides a global benchmark for personnel certification programs to ensure consistent, comparable and reliable operations worldwide.
What does NCCA and IAS Accreditation Mean?
The NCCA and IAS both evaluate the processes and systems used by NCHEC to identify professional role and scope of practice, develop exam content, and provide proper exam administration and scoring. Accreditation by these agencies will ensure that an organization has:
- Employed assessment instruments that are derived from the job/practice analysis and that are consistent with generally accepted psychometric principles.
- Awarded certification only after the knowledge and/or skill of individual applicants have been evaluated and determined to be acceptable.
- Established, published, applied, and periodically reviewed key certification policies and procedures concerning existing and prospective certificants.
- Demonstrated that its recertification requirements measure or enhance the continued competence of certificants.
Accreditation provides an excellent barometer of current professional workplace competencies that a CHES or MCHES will face, as well as an ongoing commitment to a certification’s continual improvement. Furthermore, the value of accreditation extends from NCHEC, to you – the certification holder, onto the employer, and then to the public.
The National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA)
International Accreditation Service (IAS)
Distinguishing between Quality Certification and Assessment-Based Certificate Programs